Design, synthesis, and evaluation of a selective chemosensor for leucine-rich repeat kinase 2

David A. Szalewski, Jon R. Beck, Cliff I. Stains

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We describe the design, synthesis, and evaluation of a selective activity probe for leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2), a possible molecular target for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Our optimal chemosensor design, termed Nictide-S2, incorporates a phosphorylation-sensitive sulfonamido-oxine fluorophore at an engineered cysteine within the substrate sequence. This design allows for the direct, real-time analysis of LRRK2 kinase activity with a detection limit of 2.5 nM. Under optimized conditions, we measured a Z′ factor of 0.7 demonstrating the potential utility of this assay for inhibitor screening. Off-target kinases capable of phosphorylating Nictide-S2 are identified and an optimized inhibitor cocktail for suppressing background signal is provided. The resulting chemosensor could be utilized to identify LRRK2 inhibitors as well as selectively report on LRRK2 activity in the presence of off-target kinases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5648-5651
Number of pages4
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters
Issue number24
StatePublished - Dec 15 2014


  • Fluorescence-based biosensor
  • Inhibitor
  • Kinase activity assay
  • LRRK2
  • Parkinson's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


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